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Yankees and MLB celebrate Jackie Robinson Day

Posted by: Chad Jennings - Posted in Misc on Apr 15, 2011 Print This Post Print This Post | Email This Post Email This Post

This morning, manager Joe Girardi, general manager Brian Cashman and assistant general manager Jean Afterman will be among the Yankees representatives supporting a youth baseball and softball clinic in honor of Jackie Robinson Day. Here are a few more details from the league.

Major League Baseball will be joined by representatives of the New York Yankees and Texas Rangers Manager Ron Washington in commemorating the 8th Annual Jackie Robinson Day by supporting a youth baseball and softball clinic for players that participate in the Newark Reviving Baseball in Inner Cities (RBI) program. MLB annually recognizes April 15 as Jackie Robinson Day in memory of the late Baseball Hall of Famer. Robinson played his first Major League game at Ebbets Field on April 15, 1947 as a first baseman for the Brooklyn Dodgers.

Approximately 250 young people, ages 5-18, from the Newark RBI program will participate in various stations covering basic baseball and softball skills. The clinic will be operated by the Cal Ripken, Sr. Foundation. The equipment for the clinic will be donated by Pitch In For Baseball. The RBI program is the Major League Baseball youth initiative designed to provide opportunities to play baseball and softball, to encourage academic success, and to teach the value of teamwork and other important life lessons to underserved young people, ages 5 to 18, from urban communities. RBI supports more than 200,000 young people in more than 300 programs established in more than 200 cities worldwide.

Additionally, the Baseball Tomorrow Fund (BTF) will unveil a newly constructed indoor practice facility at Kasberger Field. A BTF grant of more than $33,000 provided funding for the purchase of batting cages, pitching tunnels and related equipment for the indoor facility, as well as coaches training clinic expenses.

Additionally, tonight the Yankees will celebrate Jackie Robinson Day with a series of pregame ceremonies. The details from the team:

Friday is Jackie Robinson Day in Major League Baseball. All MLB players, coaches and umpires will wear No. 42 as a tribute to Robinson, who broke Baseball’s color barrier with the Brooklyn Dodgers on 4/15/47 at Ebbets Field.

MLB and the Yankees have scheduled an on-field ceremony which will include Rachel Robinson, Jackie’s wife and Founder of the Jackie Robinson Foundation; their daughter Sharon Robinson, Vice Chair of the Foundation; and two Jackie Robinson scholars.

Additionally the Tuskegee Airmen will be honored as part of the pregame celebration.

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154 Responses to “Yankees and MLB celebrate Jackie Robinson Day”

  1. G. Love April 15th, 2011 at 11:07 am

    (repost)

    I think they should move Hughes to the pen. It should be something like this, “We’re taking you out of the rotation for the time being, but we’re not sending you to Siberia. Air it out in the pen and work with us on the problem and when the velocity is back, you go right back into your role”.

    With Feliciano’s injury, we can afford to carry Hughes in the pen and still have a Noesi/Silva/Millwood for long man.

    I think Colon, right now, is capable of giving this team 6 innings of 2 run ball with the stuff he’s showing.

    Hughes is not capable of that. You think he looked better last night? Yeah, he did. As a 1 inning pitcher. Not a starting pitcher.

    Let Rothschild work with Hughes up here and let him come into a game and pump fastballs as a reliever until the stuff sharpens and speeds up. If he flounders in the pen, then you send him to Tampa to be rebuilt into a new pitcher.

    That’s my two cents.

  2. mick April 15th, 2011 at 11:07 am

    Tonight they all wear Mo’s #.

  3. mick April 15th, 2011 at 11:08 am

    G. Love

    I agree. Worth a shot, let him air it out.

  4. pat April 15th, 2011 at 11:09 am

    Can’t decide if this trend by the Sox represents an attempt at gamesmanship or paranoia?

    Ken_Rosenthal Gonzalez’s limited no-trade clause with #RedSox is same as Crawford’s and Lackey’s. Can be sent only to two clubs, but club that acquires him cannot subsequently send him to the #Yankees.

  5. blake April 15th, 2011 at 11:10 am

    G. Love,

    but if the stay in the bullpen is prolonged then you have the issue of keeping him stretched out or having to send him down to be stretched out…..I think you skip him a start or two and send him to Tampa. This isn’t something that he needs to work out against big league hitters IMO.

  6. Joe from Long Island April 15th, 2011 at 11:10 am

    I have to think that every player is different.

    It just might be that Phil Hughes and Brett Cecil, at least at this point in their respective careers, need to focus more on their fastballs early on. Seems strange to me that if John Farrell is a fastball first kind of guy, that Cecil would be having this issue.

    If it is as relatively simple as that, then Hughes velocity and FB problem is fixable. Also, Hughes, as a young guy, learns that he needs to spend more time in ST working on number 1.

    I guess it’s hard work being a big league ballplayer. Else, everyone would be doing it.

  7. fiveironfromfenway April 15th, 2011 at 11:12 am

    I am still not sure why the Yankees are so adament about not sending Hughes to the Dr. With diminished velocity why speculate. MRI would take an hour and you can then at least rule out injury. No sense risking harm if something is already fragile.
    Re. Nunez – he really needs to get sent back to SWB. He needs to play and develop. There will be no time at the ML level for him to play.

  8. 108 stitches April 15th, 2011 at 11:13 am

    G. Love :

    Sounds like the sensible thing to do especially with the season being so young. It’s not like he has to be hurried to be ready for the playoffs and there’s no other options.

  9. mick April 15th, 2011 at 11:14 am

    We oughtta lay off Phil for a while…wouldn’t want to look like a hypocrite, :)

  10. Rich in NJ April 15th, 2011 at 11:14 am

    Hughes can only build arm strength if he stays stretched out. You can’t do that in the pen.

  11. mick April 15th, 2011 at 11:15 am

    Have to think Noesi for a spot start is the reason they brought him up, what other purpose does he serve?

  12. Fran the original April 15th, 2011 at 11:15 am

    mick,

    You brought the Yanks good luck last night. Hope you do the same tonight :)

  13. pat April 15th, 2011 at 11:17 am

    Are Phil and Cecil adding credence to the Verducci Effect?

    I hope not because Tom Verducci is too smug already. :sad:

  14. mick April 15th, 2011 at 11:17 am

    Fran, I am on a hot roll.
    Even caught a Cano BP HR last night!
    3-0 on the season, going for #4 tonight…

  15. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:18 am

    Have to think Noesi for a spot start is the reason they brought him up, what other purpose does he serve?

    Same as Nova did when he came up last year, some innings out of the pen.

  16. Erin April 15th, 2011 at 11:20 am

    mick April 15th, 2011 at 11:17 am
    Even caught a Cano BP HR last night!

    **************************
    You did?? I’m very jealous! ;)

  17. G. Love April 15th, 2011 at 11:20 am

    blake,

    It’s a definite risk. But I think the Yankees reluctance to do anything with Hughes has more to do what sending him to the minors or DL would indicate. They’re very concerned with perception here by either the media/fans or by Hughes himself. Making him the last guy in the pen is a no risk move that allows them to keep him up here and keep an eye on his progress.

    That said, if he gets his fastball to 95 in the pen but can only sustain it for an inning or two that doesn’t do much for Hughes other than keep him a reliever for his career.

    And maybe, just maybe, that’s what he might turn out to be. Maybe he doesn’t have the physical capacity to be a starting pitcher. Maybe he’s another Papelbon?

    The fact is right now, he is a fastball pitcher with no secondary stuff to speak of to get major league hitters out. He’s almost a one pitch pitcher without his one pitch right now — the fastball.

    I know people would go nuts and blame the Yankees for this, but I’m not sure this guy has developed well on his own. His reliance on the fastball makes him a bit of a one trick pony. To me, that’s a relief pitcher. If Hughes can’t throw hard and locate and can’t develop a secondary pitch, I don’t see how he’ll ever be a major league starter.

    That said, the first order of business is to get the fastball back.

    I’m just glad Cashman didn’t sign Hughes to a Bucholtz like extension. They didn’t do it with Wang either and that paid off in the end.

  18. Fran the original April 15th, 2011 at 11:22 am

    mick,

    Wow. That is exciting.

    Hope you go 4-0 tonight. If you do we may have to send you to all of the games :)

    Have fun.

  19. Rich in NJ April 15th, 2011 at 11:23 am

    Putting Hughes in the pen wold be a panic move at this point, and really short-sighted.

    Assuming he’s healthy, they’l probably just skip a start.

  20. RayVT April 15th, 2011 at 11:23 am

    G. Love April 15th, 2011 at 11:07 am

    That is a good idea IMO. I think he needs to know mechanically how to throw the 4 seamer again.

  21. mick April 15th, 2011 at 11:25 am

    Hope you go 4-0 tonight. If you do we may have to send you to all of the games
    ==================================
    That could be arranged :)

  22. RayVT April 15th, 2011 at 11:28 am

    Rich in NJ April 15th, 2011 at 11:23 am

    If they plan to skip a start, which I believe they will as well, he probably gets 3 or 4 relief appearances in that span to air it out. That is what I thought G Love was suggesting.

  23. Pat M. April 15th, 2011 at 11:29 am

    What Phil Hughes is going through is similar to what The BoSox are experiencing to a degree….If this slump occurred during the season ( which is not unusual ) neither would be getting scrutinized as it is now because this situation is happening right out of the gate……I still maintain his is a result of focusing on offspeed stuff this March ….Power pitchers need to establish their bread and butter pitch first and then work everything off of that……

  24. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:29 am

    Seems like Lester and Buchholz fastballs got faster at the major league level (And Hughes compared to when he first came up).

    Lester got rid of cancer and when fully healthy showed what he was capable of. Buchholz had to have his motion changed to do it because they weren’t happy with his fastball.

    Hughes threw faster in 09 and 2010 than he did in 07 and 08. We don’t count this as a victory though because he died this year.

    Michael Bowden though has been up in parts of 3 seasons and didn’t increase his fastball at all.

    So are the Red Sox really doing something, or is it just that in the small sample of 2 pitchers, they gained velocity for other reasons? (Which make more sense, re: cancer)

  25. Laura - I Bleed Blue April 15th, 2011 at 11:29 am

    Hughes doesn’t need to go to the pen. He needs to see a doctor.

  26. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 11:31 am

    “As is the case with Beckett, Farrell has stressed command of the fastball first and foremost.”

    http://www.nesn.com/2010/10/jo…..place.html

  27. blake April 15th, 2011 at 11:32 am

    G. Love,

    I think the Yankees would get crushed more by the media by moving him to the bullpen than they would by sending him to extended spring training. They already have the perception of not being able to make up their minds with Joba….that would only add to that to me.

    I really think he needs to be placed in an enviroment where he can pitch and work through this without having to worry about the results mattering right now……you can’t do that in the big leagues.

  28. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:33 am

    http://www.nesn.com/2010/10/jo…..place.html

    Jon Lester
    Under Farrell, the dynamic left-hander has cut down on the use of his fastball.

    From the same article.

  29. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:34 am

    Not sure if you can use an article like that to posit that Farrel pushes the fastball more than every other pitching coach in the league.

  30. blake April 15th, 2011 at 11:35 am

    Speaking of Joba….he looked incredible last night. His slider is unhittable when its like that….looks like a fastball and then it’s just gone.

  31. Tom in N.J. April 15th, 2011 at 11:35 am

    One of history’ strange coincidences is that this is also the day Lincoln died.

  32. MaineYankee April 15th, 2011 at 11:37 am

    Why hasn’t Wakefields fastball increased? :lol:

  33. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 11:38 am

    “Seems strange to me that if John Farrell is a fastball first kind of guy, that Cecil would be having this issue.”

    good point.

    this whole thing about losing and gaining velocity is a puzzle.

    what’s interesting to me is learning about what makes a fastball tick.

    i do know a player has to try hard to throw fast.

    a fastball or swinging a bat or club doesn’t come without maximum effort.

    and there is the use it or lose it factor.

    i think pat m is right that hughes focused too much on secondary pitches and just didn’t work on his fastball.

    luckily we are having the luxury of discussing hughes with the yankees playing well. this conversation would be getting ugly if the yankees had a losing record.

  34. Against All Odds April 15th, 2011 at 11:39 am

    # blake April 15th, 2011 at 11:35 am

    Speaking of Joba….he looked incredible last night. His slider is unhittable when its like that….looks like a fastball and then it’s just gone.

    —————————————-

    the hut is back

  35. West Coast Yankee Fan April 15th, 2011 at 11:39 am

    Great post Chad. Ken Burns is working on a new documentary about Jackie Robinson. Branch Rickey and Jackie Robison changed the face of sports forever.

    “Jackie (Robinson), we’ve got no army. There’s virtually nobody on our side. No owners, no umpires, very few newspapermen. And I’m afraid that many fans will be hostile. We’ll be in a tough position. We can win only if we can convince the world that I’m doing this because you’re a great ballplayer, a fine gentleman. – Branch Rickey”

  36. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 11:42 am

    “Not sure if you can use an article like that to posit that Farrel pushes the fastball more than every other pitching coach in the league.”

    i said he pushes it more than any other pitching coach i know of.

    i don’t follow every pitching coach in the league. i wouldn’t know about farrell if he wasn’t the red sox pitching coach.

    the real point though is that phil hughes for whatever reason is not pushing his fastball and it’s gone backwards.

    we want to know why hughes has lost 2-3 miles off his fastball.

  37. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:42 am

    the real point though is that phil hughes for whatever reason is not pushing his fastball and it’s gone backwards.

    He threw 60%+ fastballs every year in the big leagues. You are only speculating that he is not pushing it.

  38. G. Love April 15th, 2011 at 11:42 am

    blake,

    I want Hughes off the team to figure this out, I just don’t think the Yankees will make that move until Hughes is bloodied and beaten more than he already is.

    It’s not a panic move when 1 of your 5 starting pitchers has lost his stuff, his confidence and his ability to pitch at this level.

    A panic move, to me, is pretending it’s not happening and rolling him out every 5th day to get his brains beaten in until he limps off the mound to a chorus of boos he’ll never forget.

    That said, I see Girardi doing a lot of “pretending it’s not happening” in his managerial career, but this decision should come from above his head. I don’t think the Steins and Levine will show too much more patience for this and as we know from the Soriano signing, they make the calls when they want to make the calls.

  39. MaineYankee April 15th, 2011 at 11:43 am

    Phil focused on his secondary pitches in ST because he read all the people here that thought he needed to use them more.

    It’s hard to please the masses.

  40. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 11:45 am

    Here’s what I would do with Hughes:

    1) Get an MRI to rule out any possibility of
    hidden structural damage.

    2) Allow Colon to take at least 1 start from
    Phil.

    3) Have Hughes continue to long toss, and
    continue to build arm strength.

    4) Simplify his approach for the time being
    by having focus on throwing FB’s, and
    working on his command.

    5) After a prescribed period check his velocity
    again. If it has not improved then further
    steps to help regain it should be considered. Those steps could include a DL
    stint and rehab, a trip to AAA, or a stint in
    the pen. All options should be considered.

    That’s my take.

  41. Pat M. April 15th, 2011 at 11:46 am

    Randy….Bud Black is a big promoter of fastball first….Before going to San Diego to be their skipper he instructed the entire Angel Organization to develop fastball command as the # 1 priority…….Power pitching wins

  42. Salliedogs7 April 15th, 2011 at 11:47 am

    I read today MLB is leaning towards expanding replay for 2012 season to include trapped balls and fair or foul rulings. Thought?

  43. MaineYankee April 15th, 2011 at 11:47 am

    G. Love

    That said, I see Girardi doing a lot of “pretending it’s not happening” in his managerial career, but this decision should come from above his head. I don’t think the Steins and Levine will show too much more patience for this and as we know from the Soriano signing, they make the calls when they want to make the calls.

    ———————————————————————————————–

    How do you know who is making this decision?

  44. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 11:48 am

    “Jon Lester
    Under Farrell, the dynamic left-hander has cut down on the use of his fastball.

    From the same article.”

    yes in games, but that doesn’t mean that farrell doesn’t establish fastball command first in workouts.

    once fastball command is established it does appear farrel loves the cutter. leiter made a comment last night that he liked the cutter because it was close to a fastball in velocity.

    so it make sense that farrell would like the cutter too

    the thing we’re trying to figure out is why hughes has lost his fastball.

    we definitely are not hearing from him and the yankees that he was working heavily on his fastball command in spring training.

  45. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 11:48 am

    Pat M.-

    If I remember correctly so was leo Mazzone.

  46. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 11:49 am

    “.Bud Black is a big promoter of fastball first….Before going to San Diego to be their skipper he instructed the entire Angel Organization to develop fastball command as the # 1 priority…….Power pitching wins”

    thanks pat. i agree.

  47. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:50 am

    I wanna know what pitching coaches don’t think establishing fastball command is the first thing a pitcher does

  48. BD (Boston Dave) April 15th, 2011 at 11:50 am

    I’ve seen alot of people saying “don’t move Colon because he’s doing such a good job as the long man.”

    The only reason Colon has even had to be used was because Hughes was so terrible on his last two starts. Take Hughes out for a while, and you hope you don’t really need an effective long man to save games.

    Colon can start if necessary – he has his entire career. the long man role is hardly a position that you should worry about…. it’s a role you hope you never even need to use.

  49. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:51 am

    we definitely are not hearing from him and the yankees that he was working heavily on his fastball command in spring training.

    Hughes specifically referenced command of his fastball as coming along after his first few starts in spring.

  50. G. Love April 15th, 2011 at 11:52 am

    Maine,

    I don’t know who is making the decision. What I do know is the ownership group and front office above Cashman stepped in and signed a reliever this winter that Cashman didn’t want to sign.

    I think if the top guys think Phil is hurting their post season chances or is bad for business, they will lean on the team to do something here if they haven’t already.

    They’re not as hands off as people like to think, otherwise Soriano wouldn’t be a Yankee.

  51. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 11:52 am

    “He threw 60%+ fastballs every year in the big leagues. You are only speculating that he is not pushing it.”

    of course i’m speculating. that’s what i do when i don’t know the answer to something and searching for the answer.

    only a know it all doesn’t ever speculate.

    not that i’m saying that’s anyone here :)

  52. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 11:52 am

    Salliedogs7 April 15th, 2011 at 11:47 am
    I read today MLB is leaning towards expanding replay for 2012 season to include trapped balls and fair or foul rulings. Thought?
    _________
    I think I’ll have some lunch. Maybe an iced peach tea too.

  53. blake April 15th, 2011 at 11:52 am

    “A panic move, to me, is pretending it’s not happening and rolling him out every 5th day to get his brains beaten in until he limps off the mound to a chorus of boos he’ll never forget”

    agree 100%. Him getting knocked around every 5 days isn’t helping anyone including Hughes himself.

  54. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:53 am

    only a know it all doesn’t ever speculate.

    ‘the real point though is that phil hughes for whatever reason is not pushing his fastball’

    This sounds an awful lot like trying to paint speculation as fact :) Please don’t disparage yourself like that.

  55. pat April 15th, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Tweets from a former Yankee reliever

    Very true that Torre rode the hot hand and would use guys extensively. Guys will never turn the ball down.

    it is up to the manager to protect his players and understand how to use guys and keep them fresh. Torre did not know how!

    I agree with Cashman on this one! Best manager in my career that took care of his players – Bobby Cox!

    Any competitive player/pitcher will always want to take the ball. Managers job is know how to balance the bullpen.

    If they want to build his arm strength they need to send him to AAA and get his velocity up! Can’t do it from pen!

    steve_karsay

  56. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:54 am

    Its just as likely that Hughes is injured and playing through it as he is not pushing his fastball. Or that it is something mechanical. Or his arm died.

  57. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 11:54 am

    “Hughes specifically referenced command of his fastball as coming along after his first few starts in spring.”

    i missed that one.

    are you taking the position that hughes primary goal this past spring was working on his fastball command?

    my position was that it wasn’t his primary goal.

    but it should have been.

  58. blake April 15th, 2011 at 11:56 am

    BD,

    I agree in general and I’m not opposed to Colon stepping into the rotation….he’s deserves it the way he’s pitched. However, if he could be used in a similar manner to the way Aceves was a couple of years ago then that’s a very valuable piece….much more so than a long man. I think my point was that if Hughes is out of the rotation for a bit then Colon could probably handle that role better than Noesi could….that is if Noesi could be acceptable in the rotation.

  59. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 11:56 am

    are you taking the position that hughes primary goal this past spring was working on his fastball command?

    my position was that it wasn’t his primary goal.

    but it should have been.

    I’m taking the position that Hughes most likely threw 60% fastballs, so what more do you want? He wasn’t flipping them up there without caring about it.

    The fact that he specifically referenced fastball command and its status game by game leads me to believe he was focused on it.

    Compare how many fastballs Hughes threw in spring to the red sox.

  60. SJ44 April 15th, 2011 at 11:57 am

    Not seeing how moving Hughes to the pen solves anything.

    Pitching less frequently isn’t going to make his arm stronger.

    My $.02 theory………

    Too much time was spent in ST ignoring his FB and working on his secondary pitches.

    If you dont use it, you lose it.

    Right now, Hughes has “lost” his fastball.

    Only way to get it back is to use it.

    The bullpen won’t help.

    He’s not injured so, just have Colon piggyback his next 2 starts and see how it goes.

    Or, with the 2 off days coming up, skip a turn.

    I’m not for Colon in the rotation right now because he seems to run out of gas after 50-60 pitches.

    Don’t see how that’s helpful if hrs starting.

  61. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 11:57 am

    “Its just as likely that Hughes is injured and playing through it as he is not pushing his fastball”

    jerkface-

    this is actually the scary thing.

    an athlete can sense when it is taking too much of an effort to go all out.

    phil may indeed sensing something is wrong and he just doesn’t want to let it al out.

    the yankees should with caution here.

    the blinking yellow light is definitely on.

  62. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 11:59 am

    I think we all can agree on the fact that Hughes needs to find his FB velo and command.

    Points of possible disagreement are what might be causing the diminshed velo, etc.,
    and how to remedy it, or possibly how long it might take.

    Honest people can disagree on those things.

    What matters is that the Yankees and Phil
    get it figured out together, and get him back
    on track as soon as is humanly possible.

    That 200 innings may have been just a wee
    bit too much for Phil last season.

    It may take a little more time. we’ll see.

  63. JM April 15th, 2011 at 12:00 pm

    pat,

    thanks for those. very interesting.

  64. SJ44 April 15th, 2011 at 12:03 pm

    One last point on this…..

    His delivery is out of whack from last year.

    He’s not only standing too high at the start, he’s not driving downhill toward the target.

    Everything seems too high to my eyes from start to finish.

    It’s almost as if he’s trying to muscle up to bring more velocity. When you do that, everything actually slows down and you throw it even slower.

    I’d give him 2 more starts and see what happens.

    If there isn’t improvement, then a trip to AAA may be necessary.

  65. Tom in N.J. April 15th, 2011 at 12:03 pm

    Send Hughes down to extended spring and let him work out his issues down there.

    He’s not helping anybody right now, not himself and not the team. In the majors it’s not about working on things. It’s about execution and results. What Hughes needs right now does not coincide with what the Yankees need.

  66. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 12:03 pm

    Randy-

    That is why I think an exam is warranted first.

    Just because a Person doesn’t feel pain yet does not mean something isn’t brewing.

    And I ain’t talkin’ beer or tea here.

    ;)

  67. Joe from Long Island April 15th, 2011 at 12:05 pm

    randy at 11:38 – based on the very little I know about playing baseball, this seems to make good sense. (so take my input with a grain of salt ;) )

    As far as looking for medical issues – I can guarantee you, that if you look hard enough, you will find a abnormality in the body of every human being walking the planet.

    If you read Ball Four, Bouton’s book, he wrote that when a pitcher says he doesn’t hurt, he really means he doesn’t hurt more than usual.

    If you do MRIs on baseball pitchers, you will have a very high probability of finding wear and tear. Throwinig a baseball overhand like they do is billed as a very abnormal motion and activity. Hence, wear and tear. Whether that wear and tear correlates to anything pathologic is the question.

    I liken it to getting MRIs on people with back pain. There’s a very high probability of finding problems like slipped discs. But, that finding doesn’t necessarily correlate with the pain they’re having. That’s why many people, after their back surgery, continue to have pain just as bad, and why conservative therapy seems to work so well in comparison.

    My stepson is an amateur athlete, has been for years. A friend of his got him an MRI of his back last year, just for kicks (he works as a tech at an outpatient private facility). It showed a partial disc hernation. My stepson, who is totally asymptomatic, now doesn’t know what to make of it, and is afraid of playing ball anymore.

  68. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 12:05 pm

    jerkface-

    we’re both trying to figure out what’s going on with hughes so i appreciate the discussion.
    we’re really not at odds with what we’re trying to figure out.

    just like with wang when we all attempted to figure out what was going on, we will eventually have a good idea of what’s going on with hughes.

    this is going to play out and we’ll get the answers.

    the same thing happened with burnett. the conclusion that many of us came to was burnett spun too much like a top and it turns out we we’re right. he’s more direct to the plate now.

    like with wang and burnett this hughes velocity loss puzzle will be answered with time.
    we all just want it to have a good ending.

  69. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    SJ-

    I think the added pressure to perform at the ML level is more of an impediment right now than a help.

    Phil absolutely wants to bring it. He just can’t right now, and IMHO putting out there only compounds the problem rather than helping it.

    He can throw bad FB all day at Tampa or in a MiLB and it won’t matter because they can afford to let him work on things.

    I don’t think that works at the ML level.

    Again, honest people can agree to disagree on that one.

    As always people with experience should know better in these matters.

    If they want to hire me I’m ready.

    :)

  70. Pat M. April 15th, 2011 at 12:09 pm

    Pat……Didn’t Bobby Cox use Jeffery Hammonds over 100 times the year before Cashman signed him…Granted his forte was the change but nevertheless…..Managers walk a fine unemployment line if they don’t win games as their # 1 priority…..Unfortunately relief pitchers are like disposable lighters for the most part…….SJ, I agree with you about Colon being best suited for exactly what he is doing right now…..His tank hits E after 45 / 50 pitches

  71. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 12:11 pm

    the same thing happened with burnett. the conclusion that many of us came to was burnett spun too much like a top and it turns out we we’re right. he’s more direct to the plate now

    Do you mean that Burnett lost his fastball? Because his avg velocity this year is less than last year.

  72. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 12:12 pm

    “It’s almost as if he’s trying to muscle up to bring more velocity. When you do that, everything actually slows down and you throw it even slower.”

    sj44-

    yes it looks like he has a lot of focus when he starts down with the ball, almost too much emphasis on his arm rather than his whole body motion.

  73. blake April 15th, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    SJ,

    I agree. He’s finishing high…not driving towards the target either with his legs or left shoulder. It’s not a huge mechanical issue like AJ was having last year….everything just looks sluggish and he’s not getting that good finish to his pitches that we are used to seeing….looks like my golf swing when I’m afraid to swing because I don’t know where it’s going….

  74. SJ44 April 15th, 2011 at 12:13 pm

    Great points Joe.

    Andy Pettitte refused to have X-Rays or an MRI done on his elbow and shoulder in his final years as a Yankee.

    He didn’t want to know what was in there because he wanted to pitch.

    Obviously, it’s different for a guy at the end of his career than a young guy like Hughes.

    However, he’s not hurt. If he was, he would submit to a battery of tests because it’s easier to be hurt in this instance than to struggle.

    He’s passed all the baseline tests done on him.

    Given the hypersensitive way the Yankees are with banging young pitchers, if he was hurt, or having other than normal discomfort, he wouldn’t be out there.

    Look around baseball. Hughes isn’t the only guy trying to find velocity in April.

    That, and oblique injuries, seem to be the “in” things this month.

  75. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 12:14 pm

    Given the hypersensitive way the Yankees are with banging young pitchers

    No wonder they bust :x

  76. blake April 15th, 2011 at 12:16 pm

    “That, and oblique injuries, seem to be the “in” things this month.”

    and blisters

  77. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 12:17 pm

    “Do you mean that Burnett lost his fastball”

    no, i meant that burnett had problems last year and we and the yankees eventually figured it out.

    burnett is not smart enough to figure out how to lose his fastball.

    he just throws the crap out of the ball.

    that tends to keep the velocity near max over one’s career.

  78. Pat M. April 15th, 2011 at 12:19 pm

    blake….the aiming not finishing his pitches was your call right after Miguel launched that 2nd dinger into the bleachers during his 1st start……..

  79. Erin April 15th, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    russellmartin55 RT “Above anything else, I hate to lose.” – Jackie Robinson

  80. SJ44 April 15th, 2011 at 12:20 pm

    MTU,

    Subject to change, I think I’d give him 2 more starts in NY, with Colon shadowing him, to see if there is improvement.

    Obviously, if they see something in his side work or bullpen that causes them worry, you change the plan.

    Martin said Hughes has his best bullpen of the year prior to the game.

    I thought his fastball and command looked much better (regardless of gun readings) in the first two innings.

    A bad cutter to Markakis seemed to change the direction of his evening.

    Right now, I’m interested if he can build on the first two innings from last night in his next start.

  81. blake April 15th, 2011 at 12:22 pm

    Pat M,

    those 2 balls that Miggy hit out might as well have been placed on a tee….as you’ve said his location right now is as big a problem as anything……and I’m sure that’s a symptom of the same thing that’s causing the velocity decrease. He’ll figure it out….I still believe in him.

  82. blake April 15th, 2011 at 12:25 pm

    For those that haven’t noticed….the Arod that was the best player in baseball for years has returned. Not many single players can affect which team wins a division in baseball…..if he stays healthy, he’s one of them.

  83. randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 12:25 pm

    “He’ll figure it out….I still believe in him.”

    pat m -

    i think he’ll figure it out too, but it’s probably going to take some time. hopefully not too much.

    the yankees need him too be good .

    there is no replacement if he stays off for longer than a short period.

  84. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 12:26 pm

    SJ-

    Appreciate the feedback.

    My take on Phil last eve was a little different.

    To my untrained eye I don’t think he showed much if any improvement.

    And to be very honest, though I defer to superior experience, I am not as sanguine
    about Hughes being able to produce results
    in the mode you suggest.

    I am very certain that the Yankees braintrust
    will discuss what to do, and come up with an action plan, if you will, to deal with it.

    Many options exist. Let’s see what they chose.

    Agree or disagree always appreciate you sharing your perspective.

    It’s invaluable to a novice like myself.

  85. Pat M. April 15th, 2011 at 12:26 pm

    SJ….How’s Tony season going beyond the numbers ???

  86. G. Love April 15th, 2011 at 12:28 pm

    Pat M.

    Jeffrey Hammonds was an OF. I think you mean Chris Hammond the LHP.

  87. blake April 15th, 2011 at 12:31 pm

    “there is no replacement if he stays off for longer than a short period.”

    if it appears that Hughes’s issues are going to last the entire season then I think the Yanks will make a deal for a starter. They might anyway, but if he doesn’t show progress by the deadline then I think they’ll make a move.

  88. SJ44 April 15th, 2011 at 12:32 pm

    Pat,

    He’s off to a good start.

    Probably called the best game of his career last night in a 2-0 win.

    He’s really improving in that area.

    Hrs seeing a lot of pitches and making good contact in a very good pitchers league.

    Overall, I’m not displeased with his start.

    I’m really happy. As is his manager, with the way he is taking ownership of his pitching staff.

    Big step forward for him in that area.

  89. Pat M. April 15th, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    G. Love, thank you for the save !!!!

  90. champ809 April 15th, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    On the topic of Torre and his use of relievers….you would think these guys would adjust to some of the commentary about them particularly when the evidence supports it.

    I read yesterday where Aroldis Chapman was diagnosed with and inflamed arm which you would think considering his incredible value to that team and the tremendous investment thay made in him would cause them to shut him down for at least a few days at the minimum. factor in that no one really knows how much he threw or what his usage patterns were while playing in Cuba to err more on the side of caution with him.

    Instead Dusty Baker basically says he should be available for tonights game. Amazing!

  91. Pat M. April 15th, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    SJ……That’s his last test, calling the game !!!!

  92. joeman April 15th, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    news flash…2 strike Gardner stinks….but he’s fast

  93. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 12:34 pm

    randy l. April 15th, 2011 at 12:25 pm

    the yankees need him too be good .
    ______________
    That in a nutshell is the key point. The games in April are not as important as the play-off games–where the Yankees need Phil at his best. Girardi can afford to run him out a few more times to build up his arm strength and wait for results for a few reasons:

    1. He has a strong offense and bulpen that can come from behind to win bad starts from Phil
    2. The team is strong enough to carry Phil as a #5 starter-type at this point.
    3. The organization’s best PC is Rothschild, and he should be working to fix Hughes.
    4. Hughes will probably improve with warmer weather and more innings.

    This whole panic mode or even focus is way overblown IMO

  94. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 12:39 pm

    champ809 April 15th, 2011 at 12:33 pm

    Instead Dusty Baker basically says he should be available for tonights game. Amazing!
    _____________
    Dusty Baker’s bullpen–where good young arms go to die.

  95. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    Bojo-

    It is not Panic by any stretch of the imagination to consider at some length, or to take not of an obvious and significant decrement to Hughes stuff.

    It’s as plain as the nose on your face.

    And let’s confuse concern with panic.

    Most people are panicking in the slightest.

    They are just trying to figure out.

    And as natural as the Sun coming up to talk about it IMO.

    We have some pretty sharp people around here and I for one delight in hearing them expound on it.

    My 2 cents. Take ‘em what their worth.

    :)

  96. Irreverent Discourse April 15th, 2011 at 12:41 pm

    joeman – you’re back! i’m still waiting for molina to start a game…

  97. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 12:42 pm

    Man I butchered that post. Sorry.

    I think you get my drift.

    It’s all GB’s fault, or Killer’s

  98. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 12:44 pm

    MTU April 15th, 2011 at 12:40 pm

    It’s as plain as the nose on your face.
    ____________________
    How insensitive. (Sob) I lost my nose to Michael Jackson’s plastic surgeon. (Sob). :-)

    Panic may have been too strong a word…perhaps..but I think he just needs to needs more innings under the watch of Rothschild, and the team can afford to let him work it out here. Imagine Hughes as the #5 starter, and remember the Yankees have the luxury of looking at it that way because this is a great team.

  99. Against All Odds April 15th, 2011 at 12:45 pm

    Instead Dusty Baker basically says he should be available for tonights game. Amazing!

    ————————————————

    The fact that teams allow him to handle young arms is alarming

  100. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    Irreverent Discourse April 15th, 2011 at 12:41 pm
    joeman – you’re back! i’m still waiting for molina to start a game…
    _____________
    Per an e-mail from Girardi himself, Molina “ain’t starting until I see that envelope with unmarked fives and ones totaling $12.50.”

  101. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 12:47 pm

    Bojo-

    Sorry I don’t look at it that way but you’re entitled to your opinion.

    We can always agree to disagree on the best course of action.

    Not a problem.

    It’s academic anyway since we’re not the ones
    doin’ the chosin’. The Yankees are.

    ;)

  102. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 12:49 pm

    MTU–

    Absolutely, and if we go about it with a sense of humor, we can even have fun with the disagreement.

  103. Pat M. April 15th, 2011 at 12:50 pm

    Ynaks are in first, Boston is struggling, so The Yanks have the luxury of time to get things worked out……..My immediate concern is The Rangers coming back to The Garden down 0-2……Yanks will take 2 of 3 vs. Texas, maybe even a sweep

  104. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 12:53 pm

    Bojo-

    Maybe I have the wrong approach.

    I believe that is generally my way.

    Try my level best to respect as many people as possibly can for as long as I can.

    Gotta give it to get it.

    Respect I mean.

    And definitely to not take myself, or life too seriously.

    ;)

  105. The Hand of Satan April 15th, 2011 at 12:54 pm

    Molina was seen taking photo ops with Big Foot, The Lockness Monster and the Mets Pride.

  106. Erin April 15th, 2011 at 12:55 pm

    CC_Sabathia Special day today getting to honor the man who means so much not only to the game of baseball but to this country. Proud to wear #42 today

  107. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    MTU–

    I think your approach is great. I always enjoy talking with you and your sense of humility, respect, and humor.

  108. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 12:57 pm

    The Hand of Satan April 15th, 2011 at 12:54 pm
    Molina was seen taking photo ops with Big Foot, The Lockness Monster and the Mets Pride.
    __________
    LOL! I enjoy your humor! I guess I will have to give the devil his due.

  109. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 12:57 pm

    Pat M.-

    This is the user friendly part of our schedule.

    Lot’s of home games and off days.

    We need to bank as many of them as we can.

    The 2nd half gets harder.

    That’s one of the reasons I don’t favor keeping Phil in the rotation now to work out his problems.

    ;)

  110. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 12:58 pm

    I would like to see Phil throw one game with temps in the 80s before I give up on fixing him up in the bog leagues.

  111. Fran the original April 15th, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    I think we’ll have a Molina sighting tomorrow afternoon (day game after a night game).

  112. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 1:00 pm

    Bojo-

    Thanks. The same. It really is quite easy.

    We all love the Yankees and dislike (or hate)
    the Sox.

    They are our enemy not each other.

    Common cause Man.

    I don’t eat my own.

    :)

  113. G. Love April 15th, 2011 at 1:01 pm

    I know this is unconventional thinking, but I really think if Hughes can’t get his velocity back they should put him in the great hall during games and let fans repeatedly punch him in the arm.

    Thoughts?

  114. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    G. Love-

    I’d rather is was Youkilis, and that it was the face.

    :)

  115. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 1:02 pm

    Thoughts?

    Punch him in the ribs to see how injured he is.

  116. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 1:03 pm

    I don’t actually hate the Sox. Without them, baseball would be pretty boring to watch. Every interesting event needs a good protagonist and equally good antagonist. I respect them for the rivalry they provide, and have actually rooted for them when they played against the Mets.

    IMO, life is too short to waste with hate.

  117. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 1:03 pm

    or Beckett.

  118. Pat M. April 15th, 2011 at 1:04 pm

    G. Love….If anything your suggestion is very funny

  119. Patrick April 15th, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    Has anyone been following the Phillies this year? I have no idea how they can be beaten in the playoffs their starting pitching is just too good. That team is going to steamroll everyone in October.

  120. G. Love April 15th, 2011 at 1:05 pm

    I’m just spit balling here.

  121. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 1:06 pm

    Has anyone been following the Phillies this year? I have no idea how they can be beaten in the playoffs their starting pitching is just too good. That team is going to steamroll everyone in October.

    Getting them out offensively and getting into their bullpen.

  122. blake April 15th, 2011 at 1:07 pm

    Patrick,

    The Phils offense is overachieving as much as Boston’s underacheiving. Their pitching is great though

  123. Patrick April 15th, 2011 at 1:07 pm

    Getting them out offensively and getting into their bullpen.

    Step 1 is possible. Step 2, I don’t see that being an easy task.

  124. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    Bojo-

    Most of what passes for hatred of the Sox is just hyperbole.

    Dig ?

    :)

  125. Mike_Boston April 15th, 2011 at 1:08 pm

    Has anyone out there given a half way decent explanation as to why velocity is down with so many guys around the league, besides global warming? Is it the lack of long toss that I’ve been reading about?
    Seems like almost everyone is losing MPH’s on the heater except for Joba because he’s gaining!?

  126. Irreverent Discourse April 15th, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    I’m going down to Philly for Mets/Phils in 2 weeks. Plan is to kidnap Lee and Hamels and run…

  127. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    Step 1 is possible. Step 2, I don’t see that being an easy task.

    Good pitching isn’t invincible.

  128. joeman April 15th, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    # BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    Irreverent Discourse April 15th, 2011 at 12:41 pm
    joeman – you’re back! i’m still waiting for molina to start a game…
    _____________
    Per an e-mail from Girardi himself, Molina “ain’t starting until I see that envelope with unmarked fives and ones totaling $12.50.”
    ————————————————————————-
    I blew that one up….never thought he plays RM as much as he has this early in the season…guess he’s 100%

  129. YsGuy April 15th, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    patrick when i picked the phillies to win it all this year, many on the board jumped me and told me that they couldnt, that losing werth and utley’s injury would sink them.

    i pointed out how they ended up 2nd in run differential and utley and rollins missed significant portions of the season, but was shot down, no way they can win.

    second in run differential again, leading the division, best pitching in the majors…

    the phillies are for real.

  130. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Mike-

    Joba is greedy. He is just taking from everyone else.

    He needs to learn to share more.

    :)

  131. Patrick April 15th, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Good pitching isn’t invincible.

    I realize that and obviously anything can happen in October. But can you think of any pitcher you’d take over Halladay or Lee? They have the two best pitchers in the league. And their 3 and 4 guys would be #2 starters on the Yankees. Obviously this is all old news but seeing it in action is impressive.

  132. Against All Odds April 15th, 2011 at 1:11 pm

    # Irreverent Discourse April 15th, 2011 at 1:09 pm

    I’m going down to Philly for Mets/Phils in 2 weeks. Plan is to kidnap Lee and Hamels and run…

    —————————————————————

    Sounds good but then the next step is to brain wash both guys and have them pitch for the Yanks

  133. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    Roy Halladay and Cliff Lee throw good games against the Zimmerman-less Nationals and now they are unbeatable? They still aren’t even in the top 10 of starting pitching in the early going statistically. As much as some tout the Nats they aren’t ready to compete. The Phillies have faced down the astros, mets, and nats… 3 of the worst NL teams.

  134. YsGuy April 15th, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    francessa just going off on the mets saying the fans deserve an apology.

    everything he is saying about them is right,though. they really do suck.

  135. Against All Odds April 15th, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    # YsGuy April 15th, 2011 at 1:12 pm

    francessa just going off on the mets saying the fans deserve an apology.

    everything he is saying about them is right,though. they really do suck.

    ———————————————————–

    I love it when he goes on his Met rants

  136. joeman April 15th, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    # Patrick April 15th, 2011 at 1:10 pm

    Good pitching isn’t invincible.

    I realize that and obviously anything can happen in October. But can you think of any pitcher you’d take over Halladay or Lee? They have the two best pitchers in the league. And their 3 and 4 guys would be #2 starters on the Yankees. Obviously this is all old news but seeing it in action is impressive.
    —————————————————————–

    3-4 guys might be 1A & 1B

  137. Patrick April 15th, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    Ok Jerkface you’re right, the Phillies blow

  138. YsGuy April 15th, 2011 at 1:13 pm

    hahahaha keep knocking the phillies, they just keep winning…

  139. Captain Clutch April 15th, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Phil’s next start is against the Jays, that will be ugly. Too bad the Mariners can’t stroll into town for Phil’s next 2 starts to help him get right.

  140. blake April 15th, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Ys,

    I don’t think anyone said the Phillies couldn’t win it all. If they make the postseasoj then they will be tough just because of their rotation……however after their 4 starters they have holes and pretty big ones in the bullpen. They wont hit like this all season…..being in first place and playing well after 2 weeks is meaningless…..The Indians are in first as well, it means they’ve played well for 2 weeks.

  141. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    They don’t blow, but you said, “How is anyone going to beat the phillies”?

    Well gee whiz lets crown they ass in April. They had just as good a 3-some last october and failed. And that was with Utley.

  142. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 1:16 pm

    Gotta run soon.

    Catch you all later.

  143. joeman April 15th, 2011 at 1:17 pm

    # blake April 15th, 2011 at 1:14 pm

    Ys,

    I don’t think anyone said the Phillies couldn’t win it all. If they make the postseasoj then they will be tough just because of their rotation……however after their 4 starters they have holes and pretty big ones in the bullpen. They wont hit like this all season…..being in first place and playing well after 2 weeks is meaningless…..The Indians are in first as well, it means they’ve played well for 2 weeks.
    ———————————————————-
    Vegas says they will win it all but they are like me wrong 49% of the time

  144. Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 1:18 pm

    Either the Phillies are unbeatable or they blow? No need to deal in extremes.

  145. MTU April 15th, 2011 at 1:19 pm

    Blake-

    I agree with your premises.

    If the Phillies do make it to the PS they will be very tough.

    But we all know the rules change when the PS starts and almost anything can happen.

    Teams have to get there first. Including us.

    :)

  146. joeman April 15th, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    new one

  147. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    Halladay and Lee have to get to October HEALTHY for them to matter. I’m still count on the Cliff Lee BAD KARMA factor to knock them out. Lee with back problems, and Halladay with–wait for it—wait for it—oblique problems. Cole Hammels is unpredictable if he has to carry team…

  148. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 1:20 pm

    See you MTU..

  149. BoJo April 15th, 2011 at 1:22 pm

    Jerkface April 15th, 2011 at 1:16 pm
    They had just as good a 3-some last october and failed. And that was with Utley.
    ________________
    Wow! Who were the two girls, and is there a DVD of it?

  150. YsGuy April 15th, 2011 at 1:22 pm

    i only picked the phillies to win b/c they dont have another team in thier league like the yankees/socks have to deal with (each other) so logically it made them the better pick to win it all.

    i see the holes, but they will just keep winning with that pitching.

    contreras is no chopped liver as closer and madson is pretty good. and they dont need much bp anyway.

    they are the class of the nl.

  151. Patrick April 15th, 2011 at 1:23 pm

    Ok I was exaggerating. I mean, they just went through a turn in their rotation that looks like this:

    Oswalt: 6 IP, 1 ER, 2 K, 2 BB
    Hamels: 7 IP, 0 ER, 8 K, 1 BB
    Blanton: sucks
    Halladay: 9 IP, 2 ER, 9 K, 2 BB
    Lee: 9 IP, 0 ER, 12 K, 1 BB

    I think it’s fair for me to be a little impressed. Those 4 starts in a playoff series probably leads to a series win.

    Yes of course they can lose in the playoffs, and I realize they are facing bad teams, but dude they look mad good

  152. YsGuy April 15th, 2011 at 1:24 pm

    i see francessa trying to spark the same kind of fued with the mets he has ongoing with the jets. it definitly helped his ratings through the football season when jets fans were falling all over themselves to call in and argue with him.

    i bet him and collins have a real argument that ends up in collins hanging up and a war of words between the mets and francessa.

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    he is a good player see this http://aonlinebreakingnews.blogspot.com/

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